A New Life For Ariana Byrne

Firstly I would like to laud the format through which I have consumed this book. Listening to an audio book is a rare event for me, but I decided to give he medium another try. In the event, I very much enjoyed listening to the story whilst doing other things and I think that audio books may well become a common thing for me. One thing that I did find tricker, I must admit, is the actual compilation of my review. Ordinarily I write my reviews as I read the book, making comment on things I have just read. This works for me! Seeing as how the act of listening to an audio book lends itself to being a multi task, I had to approach my review differently, but I found that listening to a few chapters and then stopping all other tasks and making review notes, worked well for me.

The story has echos of both Cinderella and Pygmalion. Ariana is a major victim of culture shock when she inherits a swathe of titles and a huge estate without warning. Fortuitously this inheritance takes place just after a Ariana has been widowed. The loss of Ariana’s Husband, Greg was in reality, no loss to anyone, apart from his parents. He was portrayed as a dreadful, cheating character, a terrible Husband and Father. I found myself grateful to the author for the way Greg was introduced, because it meant thatI felt nothing when he died in an accident. Sadly, Ariana seemed to be of the same opinion, but one really couldn’t blame her and could positively laud her reaction. The author described her In-Laws reaction to Greg’s death, in such a way that they garnered no sympathy – merely further dislike. Whilst I felt that Greg was no loss to Ariana and their Sons, his parents reaction was an abomination, including disowning their Grandchildren (and positively questioning their parentage) and treating Ariana and her children, terribly at the funeral. The way that Greg’s parents were portrayed was fantastic, amongst some of the best written dialogue in the book, such were their unpalatable personalities (that is a major understatement)! Their actions towards Ariana and the boys were completely abhorrent. If I thought their behaviour at the funeral was bad, you should read about the inquest!

Ariana meanwhile seems to have taken the eye of local landowner Seb., although he mistakenly thinks Ariana is grieving for Greg. The idea of any kind of romantic interlude for Ariana was so welcome, after all she had been through..

In all this book was a thoroughly welcome introduction to the Byrne Women, even if I have been reading them in the wrong order.Theirs is a wondrous story, told through the words of a fantastic author, and I quite frankly can’t get enough of the family.


2 thoughts on “A New Life For Ariana Byrne

  1. I don’t listen to many audiobooks either, although when I do listen, I do enjoy the audiobook format. Lovely review! Looks like a book I would enjoy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is part of a series,Wendy – each follows a different Sister. High Heels in the highlands tells Clem’s story, From Ireland with Love is out in September, and follows Nick’s story….and the other Sisters will have their stories told in due course. This is the first book in the series, but I read (listened) to it second – each book is a story in itself and can be read as a separate piece.


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